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Breastfeeding Ups Babies' Income and IQ

The old adage that breastfeeding is best has been right all along, it appears. A new study in the Lancet Global Health journal found that there's long-term benefits for babies who are breast fed, such as higher incomes and IQs into adulthood.

The study tracked 6,000 babies in Brazil for 30 years. The location of the study is significant because breastfeeding is not associated with socio-economic status, as is typical in America. Most Brazilian babies are breasted, regardless of parental income. So a wide spectrum of the populace was able to participate.

"Rich mothers as well as poor mothers, they breastfed their babies for the same amount of time [in Brazil]," said Dr. Bernardo Lesse Horte, the study's lead author.

And the results of mother's milk? They pretty much speak for themselves. As adults, breast-fed babies were found to earn an extra $100 a month, plus have a higher IQ by an average of 3.7 points

So what does the researcher in charge of this study want to come of his findings?

"We should provide a more breastfeeding-friendly environment," Horte said. "We really need public policies in favor of breastfeeding."

Do you breastfeed? Why or why not? Tell us in the comments!

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Image via c r z/Flickr

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